Rails, Trails and Automobiles…

by Ashley

The Campaign for Sensible Transportation Candidate Forum

If you have had a hard time keeping track of all the groups and their interests related to the decade long rail/trail discussions, you aren’t alone. Last night the Campaign for Sensible Transportation hosted a forum where nine out of the ten city council candidates were asked to speak on a few specific transportation topics. While this topic can be polarizing, the audience was respectable (except for some booing when one candidate spoke in favor of the 600 space parking lot) allowing each candidate to deliver their most sincere response.

Forums are a great opportunity for candidates to engage with the public and share their knowledge and perspective on a range of topics. Some of the questions asked last night were the following: Do you support building the trail ASAP and saving the tracks? What specifically can the Council do to protect and increase the supply of affordable housing? What can the City do to reduce UCSC traffic? What is your position on the Regional Transportation Commission’s plan to widen Highway 1 for 4 miles of auxiliary lanes and the City of Santa Cruz plan for widening the Hwy 1 bridge over the San Lorenzo River? Do you support the City becoming the second Vision Zero city in the County?

The following short 1 minute videos include my response to the following questions along with an opening and closing statement.

My introduction to the crowd:

I talk about the proposed downtown parking garage:

I talk more about parking solutions and the rail trail:

I talk about dealing with the planning department and building restrictions:

One thing to take away tonight:

Discussing biking and alternative transportation options:

The next candidate forum to watch for is October 2nd at the Kaiser Arena from 3pm-5pm hosted by the Santa Cruz Chamber.